Sabina Foisor Wins US Women’s; Onischuk and So Head to Playoff

We have a new US Women’s chess champion: Congrats to Sabina Foisor! Foisor won a beautiful miniature today over Apurva Virkud, capped off with a lovely finale. Can you calculate the final blow?

Play through the final game to see how Sabina’s powerful play earned her first title.

After 32.Ke2 Rf6+ 33.Kd4 Re1 34.Re2 Rxe2#

Reigning champion Nazi Paikidze, who was tied with Sabina  with 7/10 going into the round, found herself in an equal position against Jennifer Yu. Needing to catch Sabina’s eight points, Nazi kept queens on the board with 35. Kg2, but ended up giving Jennifer the edge after …Qd3, and finally the game after a series of accurate moves by Yu. This was Jennifer Yu’s third victory over a tournament favorite, having also notched wins against Irina Krush and Anna Zatonskih.

When Nazi resigned, Sabina shared an emotional embrace with her fiance, GM Elshan Moradiabadi.

Congratulations poured in from fans and peers.

Look for more on Sabina’s extraordinary accomplishment on this website and in an upcoming issue of Chess Life Magazine.

In the Open division, Wesley So and Daniel Naroditsky had a controversial quick draw when Daniel chose a line that forced a repetition in the Berlin.

That left the two underdog heroes of the tournament: Varuzhan Akobian and Alexander Onischuk. Var’s game against Hikaru was tense, with the advantage shifting hands. After the queen trade, Nakamura was in control on the board, and especially on the clock. He went on to win.

Onischuk’s game against Kamsky was a well played Ruy Lopez that fizzled out to a draw.

This leaves Onischuk and So in a tie for first. They will break the tie with playoff tomorrow, starting with two rapid games (25+5 second delay), followed by an Armageddon blitz game.

Relive the moments on the YouTube replay of round 11, including Sabina’s emotional post game interview with Maurice Ashley, which touched on the sudden loss of her mother, WIM Cristina Adela Foisor, earlier this year. 

The US Championship goes to tiebreak final tomorrow at 12:50 Central/1:50 EST. Tune in live at and follow our twitter for behind the scenes action!

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